Thermal Design and Simulation of a Heat Exchanger for a Nigerian Refinery

  • AO Oluwajobi
  • AE Akpan


A heat exchanger was designed to replace the fired heater at the Crude Distillation Unit of the Warri refinery, Nigeria. This would eliminate the problems such as pollutions and the high cost associated with the use of fired heater to heat the preflashed crude. The exchanger was designed with the use of the INPRO Heat Exchanger Software, which would use atmospheric residue at a temperature of 345°C to heat crude oil from 224°C to 252°C. The heat exchanger of TEMA AES configuration having a surface area of 620m2 and tube length of 6.1m was then simulated with the use of software – Thermal Simulator, written to determine the effect of changes in mass flow rate on pressure loss and heat transfer coefficient. Simulation results showed an increase in all output parameters, except the tube side heat transfer coefficient, which remained constant due to the high viscosity and low Reynolds number of the flow. The cost of producing the exchanger was estimated at about $120,000, with an estimated payback period of about 6 months. African Research Review Vol. 2 (4) 2008: pp. 124-143

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eISSN: 2070-0083
print ISSN: 1994-9057